Number Eight (Battlestar Galactica)
||This article describes a work or element of fiction in a primarily in-universe style. (March 2011)|
Sharon "Boomer" Valerii
Sharon "Athena" Agathon
|Battlestar Galactica character|
|Portrayed by||Grace Park|
|Title||Lieutenant Junior Grade|
|Colony||Cylon Homeworld, claims to be from Aerelon's colony Troy|
Number Eight is a female humanoid Cylon model on the television series Battlestar Galactica, a reimagining of the classic show of the same name. She is portrayed by Grace Park. Two prominent Number Eight copies serving as Galactica pilots are Sharon Valerii and Sharon Agathon, using the call signs "Boomer" and "Athena", respectively.
Notable copies 
Cylon models Six and Eight are the most common in the series. Many Number Eight copies have been seen in various roles, including leadership positions; two are featured as central characters — Boomer and Athena.
Sharon "Boomer" Valerii 
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Life on Caprica and Galactica 
Lieutenant Junior Grade Sharon "Boomer" Valerii is a Cylon sleeper agent programmed to believe she is human. For example, she has been implanted with false memories of being raised on Troy by her parents Katherine and Abraham Valerii, who supposedly died in an accident killing all the members on the mining colony. Whether or not Katherine and Abraham actually existed is unknown. In the time before the mini-series, Boomer and Galen Tyrol are romantically involved, although their relationship is against military protocol (she is an officer, he's enlisted). Due to her programming, she performs a number of sabotage actions (including bombing the Galactica's water tanks) but has no conscious memory of these actions. Tyrol trusts her and hides evidence implicating her in the water bombing but later suspicious events cause him to break off his relationship with her. In time, she begins to suspect something may be wrong with her. She asks Gaius Baltar to administer a blood test to determine whether she is a Cylon. Although his test demonstrates she is in fact a Cylon, he decides to not inform anyone out of fear she will kill him. She is relieved for a while but gradually her suspicions return and she attempts suicide. Her programming, however, prevents her from killing herself.
In the episode "Kobol's Last Gleaming", Commander Adama sends Boomer on a mission to destroy the basestar orbiting Kobol. On the basestar, she encounters numerous other Number Eight copies identical to herself but she refuses to accept she is a Cylon and personally sets the bomb. After returning to Galactica, her hidden programming takes over and she shoots Commander Adama twice in the chest, putting him in a coma. She is put in the brig and violently interrogated by Colonel Tigh, who has taken command of Galactica during Adama's incapacity. Tyrol is also suspected of being a Cylon because of his relationship with her, and is thrown in her cell. He tells her not to speak to him or even touch him; he insists she is a machine and nothing like him.
Death and resurrection 
Gaius Baltar forces Boomer to tell him how many other Cylons are still hidden in the fleet by injecting Tyrol with a substance that stops his heart and refusing to administer the antidote. Sharon finally tells Gaius there are eight Cylons in the fleet. She is shot and killed by Cally, who blames her for Tyrol's imprisonment; Cally herself is in love with Tyrol as is made clear in later episodes. Sharon dies in Tyrol's arms, telling him she loves him.
In the episode "Sacrifice" terrorist Sesha Abinell and her group take hostages about the Cloud 9, demanding that the "Athena" Sharon in Galactica's brig be turned over to her to be executed. The now Admiral Adama tells Abinell that he will give her Sharon, but will execute the Cylon before hand. He sends over "Boomer" Sharon's body as a ruse to give his Marines an opportunity to take out the terrorists. Upon receiving the body, Abinell promptly shoots it twice in the head. Thereafter however, she discovers the ruse when upon seeing the autopsy scars on the body. The rescue is successful however, at the cost of Billy Keikeya's life. Adama and Roslin later view Boomer's and Billy's bodies in the morgue, with Roslin concluding that the ruse "wasn't worth it".
In the episode "Downloaded", it is revealed Boomer's consciousness has been downloaded into a new body. She tries to live on Caprica like in her old life as a human. She resists being identified with the Cylon cause, although they view her and Caprica Six as heroes. Over time, she begins to open up to Caprica Six, who like her has been transformed by their love for a human. They decide to try to persuade the Cylons some of their actions against mankind are wrong. Number Three threatens to have them "boxed", that is, placing their consciousness into "cold storage".
Boomer is among the Cylons occupying New Caprica. She has accepted herself as a Cylon and is fully integrated back into their society. She functions as a member of the Cylon governing council that controls the puppet human government under President Gaius Baltar. Her desire remains to show humans and Cylons can co-exist, however, relations between the two groups turn increasingly hostile. Boomer visits Cally who has been imprisoned to tell her she is doing everything that she can to free her, and attempts to make peace. She indicates she has accepted Tyrol moving on and starting a family with Cally. However, Cally remains distrustful and angrily rebuffs her.
Relation to Hera Agathon and second death 
In the episode "The Eye of Jupiter", Boomer is seen attempting to care for Athena's hybrid child Hera, who is mysteriously ill. She is frustrated by the child's deteriorating health and their inability to bond. She later joins D'Anna and Cavil when they go to meet Adama and Roslin on Galactica. Athena identifies Boomer as the Cylon who shot Adama, and Tigh informs her that her visiting privileges have been revoked. Boomer tells Athena that Hera is still alive and living among the Cylons, but has fallen ill.
Athena arrives on the Cylon Base Ship and is reunited with Hera who immediately stops crying. Caprica Six is amazed how Hera responds to being back with her "real mother", however Boomer is upset. Athena determines Hera would best be treated by a human doctor. Boomer accuses her of having planned to take Hera back to Galactica from the start. Boomer says the failure of New Caprica has taught her humans and Cylons cannot co-exist and should go their separate ways. Throughout this meeting, Boomer becomes increasingly distressed and emotionally unstable. She suggests Cavil may be right that the Cylons are not supposed to have children, and ultimately threatens to snap Hera's neck, but her own neck is snapped by Caprica Six for endangering the future of the Cylon race.
Second resurrection and relation with John Cavil 
Shortly thereafter, Boomer again resurrects. She has begun to develop a relationship with John Cavil, a Cylon who embraces his machine nature and sees human traits as a weakness. Cavil insists the Raiders should undergo a procedure to remove or at least reduce their sentience, and he enlists Boomer's aid when the Cylons become deadlocked over the matter. While her fellow Eights vote as a group against the procedure, Boomer decides to vote yes in order to make the Raiders effective fighters once again. In so doing, she becomes the first Cylon to ever vote against her own model (meaning that in a six-vote bloc, she casts an unheard-of seventh vote).
After Cavil is gunned down by Natalie's forces, he resurrects and begins to plot the permanent death of the opposing Cylons, including Boomer's fellow Eights, by killing them out of range of a Resurrection ship. Boomer has doubts about killing her "own sisters", and when Cavil reassures her the souls of the others will be looked after by God, she asks, "what about our souls?" Cavil assures her, "We're machines, machines don't have souls."
Relation to Ellen Tigh and return to Galactica 
Boomer is the only other Cylon who Cavil has told that he is keeping their creator, Ellen Tigh, prisoner. He teaches Boomer to let go of her human traits to become a better machine. Cavil describes Boomer as "self-destructive, hyper-emotional, torn apart by conflicting emotions." Boomer asks Ellen if she feels any regret for limiting the Cylon by making them as close to humans as possible. Ellen says she gave them free will, the ability to think creatively, to reach out to others with compassion and love. Boomer asks angrily who she should love.
When the Resurrection Hub is destroyed, Cavil and Boomer demand Ellen help them redevelop the technology. Cavil threatens to cut open Ellen's brain in order to access her knowledge, but Boomer spirits her away in a Raptor, telling Ellen she is forgiving her. When they arrive on Galactica, Tyrol identifies her as Boomer and she is immediately taken to the brig.
The Cylon rebels decide to put her on trial for treason, with capital punishment possible due to the loss of resurrection. When Tyrol goes to see her in the brig, she professes her continued love for him. She shares with him projections of their dream home on Picon, in which they are married and have a daughter. Convinced she will be found guilty and executed, Tyrol helps her escape.
Kidnapping of Hera Agathon 
She beats Sharon "Athena" Agathon and hides her, bound and gagged, in a bathroom stall. She puts on a pilot uniform and starts cleaning up, however, Karl Agathon finds her before she can leave. Thinking she is his wife Athena who is set to go on a six day mission, he starts seducing her. Boomer tries to leave but then changes her mind and has sex with him. She then picks up Hera from the daycare center and quickly drugs her with a drink. Boomer hides Hera in a provisions supply case to be loaded onto a Raptor. She assures Tyrol she was not lying about what she told him.
Adama has been alerted Boomer is impersonating Athena and tries to stall her. However, Boomer figures out she has been discovered, and starts powering up her Raptor. Adama warns her he will shoot her down but Boomer tells him she has Hera. Adama starts closing the flight pod but she manages to fly out, clipping her port wing. She then quickly jumps away, close enough to damage Galactica from the resulting spatial disruption. Ellen later concludes everything Boomer did, including helping her escape, was planned in order to kidnap Hera and bring her to Cavil.
Final death 
Boomer keeps jumping her stolen Raptor headed for The Colony. Hera cries for her mother and Boomer goes to sedate her but cannot bring herself to do it. Instead she tells Hera about her projection of her and Tyrol's home on Picon and Hera surprises her by revealing she can project too and joining her in the projection. Boomer shows Hera the bedroom she dreamed of for her daughter and bonds with the girl. She ultimately takes her to Cavil but has doubts when Hera calls out for her. During the Colonials' assault on The Colony to rescue Hera, Boomer is shocked that Simon continues examining Hera. When he refuses to stop, Boomer kills him and takes Hera to the rescue party and returns her to her parents. Athena does not wish to forgive Boomer, who says she knew it would likely be her last act. She says she owed something to the Admiral, who had not ejected her from the Colonial Fleet when she kept failing to make proper landings. Boomer is then shot and killed by Athena. With the loss of Resurrection, her death is final.
Dual personality mode 
The movie Battlestar Galactica: The Plan shows that while she was a sleeper agent aboard Galactica, Boomer had a submerged personality who was aware of her true nature and had a romantic connection to the Brother Cavil aboard the ship, though she was extremely conflicted about her actions. Cavil used an elephant figurine as a trigger to switch Boomer from one mode to the other. This Boomer revealed that she had feelings for Tyrol too and cared deeply for Admiral Adama and stated that she preferred her human personality being in control, that she liked herself better when her main self was in control. This personality blew up the water tank (and came up with the plan to do so) and shot Adama, but she said to do so, she had to mentally make herself a Centurion which deeply disturbed her. After hearing this, Cavil abandoned Boomer to her fate in the brig and this personality never seemed to emerge again. The prostitute Six (and even Tyrol) believes that when she shot Adama, she purposefully didn't kill him.
Sharon "Athena" Agathon 
Cylon-occupied Caprica 
Another copy of Sharon, who is fully aware of her true nature, also appears in the series. She first appears when she joins then-Lieutenant Karl 'Helo' Agathon after he is stranded on the Cylon-occupied planet Caprica. She pretends to be the "original" Sharon who had returned to help him, when in fact she is working with the other Cylons on an experiment to have him fall in love with her. While her intentions at the beginning of the experiment are strictly part of the Cylon plan, she eventually falls genuinely in love with Helo, and tries to help him escape from the other Cylons. Helo discovers her true identity when he sees another Number Eight copy on Caprica (who attempts to kill him but is shot by Sharon), but Sharon eventually convinces him that she loves him, and also reveals that she is pregnant with his child. This pregnancy is the first known successful attempt at a humanoid-Cylon/Human Hybrid, and as a result is of great importance to the Cylons.
While on Caprica, Sharon and Helo encounter Kara 'Starbuck' Thrace, who realises that Sharon is a Cylon "copy" and attempts to shoot her, but is stopped by Helo. Sharon flees in Starbuck's captured Cylon Raider, casting doubt on her intentions. She returns later to aid Helo and a human resistance movement rescue Starbuck from a Cylon facility. Though only Helo trusts her, the group allows Sharon to accompany them as they rejoin President Laura Roslin's portion of the Colonial fleet, separated from Galactica.
Return to the Colonial Fleet 
Sharon's life is again threatened upon her arrival in the Colonial fleet after William Adama's attempted assassination and Boomer's death. First, Lee 'Apollo' Adama attempts to shoot her until Helo intervenes, then Roslin orders her thrown out an airlock, until Sharon uses her knowledge of the Tomb of Athena on Kobol as leverage. She demonstrates her loyalty several times in defending the group from Cylon ambushes during the trip to the tomb, even though she is chained and not entirely trusted.
Sharon's reunion with other Galactica personnel on Kobol is also tense, as then-Commander Adama initially attempts to strangle her. Her relationship with Tyrol is complicated by the events involving Boomer as well as by her romantic involvement with Helo. Despite Adama's animosity, she saves his life by exposing a plot to kill him by one of terrorist/politician Tom Zarek's followers. She tells them, "I'm Sharon, but I'm a different Sharon. I know who I am. I don't have hidden protocols or programs lying in wait to be activated. I make my own choices, I make my own decisions, and I need you to know this is my choice," as she hands him her gun. Still, she is imprisoned upon returning to Galactica and treated as an enemy by all but Helo and Tyrol.
When the Galactica is threatened by a Cylon computer virus, Sharon again demonstrates her loyalty by using her Cylon capabilities to instead turn the virus against the large approaching Cylon raider attack force, allowing the Colonial pilots to completely destroy the enemy. Although she performs this action, she seems conflicted and pained by its repercussions (mainly the subsequent slaughter of raiders). This event causes Roslin and Adama to re-evaluate their attitude towards her, and earns her significant trust. She makes several other valuable contributions to the human cause, offering intelligence and advice on various Cylon situations.
When the Battlestar Pegasus is reunited with the Colonial fleet, its commander, Rear Admiral Helena Cain, learns of Sharon's presence. Sharon is turned over to Pegasus's "Cylon Interrogator", Lt. Thorne, who beats Sharon and attempts to rape her, but is killed when Helo and Tyrol intervene.
Pregnancy and birth 
Sharon's unborn hybrid child is threatened when Roslin orders the pregnancy terminated, outraging Sharon and Helo. Roslin later relents when blood from the fetus is found to be able to cure her terminal cancer. The pregnancy is allowed to continue, and in "Downloaded", Sharon gives birth to her child prematurely, via an emergency caesarean section. The daughter is named Hera. As the baby is deemed a risk to the Fleet if raised by her Cylon mother, Hera's death is faked by Dr. Cottle. The baby is given to a human mother to raise, unbeknownst to either Sharon or Helo. Told that Hera died from breathing complications, Sharon assumes that Hera was killed by the Galactica crew and attacks Dr. Cottle and turns on Helo. She later helps navigate a mission to rescue survivors on Caprica. Her loyalty is again called into question when she chooses not to inform the Colonials that one of the survivors is a Cylon.
Post-occupation of New Caprica 
In Season 3's "Occupation", it is revealed that during the year-long gap between the events of seasons 2 and 3, Sharon and Helo were married, and Sharon took Helo's surname of Agathon. With the Galactica in need of pilots after the return of the Cylons, and having earned the full trust of Admiral Adama, Sharon is sworn in as an officer in the Colonial Fleet, at Boomer's rank of Lieutenant JG. She is sent back to New Caprica as the liaison between the Galactica fleet and the resistance effort on the ground as a precursor to an attempt to free the subjugated humans from the occupying Cylons. Adama explained that she was the ideal agent, since Centurions cannot tell her from any of the other Eights. Sharon infiltrates the Cylon Base and is able to steal the keys for the civilian ships, thus making Adama's escape plan possible. When leaving with the keys, she encounters a D'Anna Biers, a Number Three, who informs her that her child Hera is still alive. Sharon refuses to believe that Admiral Adama would have lied to her (he in fact had not been told the child was still alive), and shoots D'Anna in the knee to keep her from warning the other Cylons.
After the successful rescue of the colonists, Sharon gains a measure of acceptance among the Galactica's pilots. When Racetrack refers to her by the old call sign 'Boomer,' she replies that 'Boomer' was somebody else. The other pilots in the rec room offer suggestions for a new call-sign. Many of them affectionately tease her for being a Cylon and suggesting names like "Tin Can" and "Titanium". "Hot Dog" suggests Athena, the goddess of wisdom and war, and Sharon proudly accepts it.
Athena displays the ability to identify individual Number Eight copies, identifying Boomer (who shot Admiral Adama at the end of Season 1) when she arrives aboard Galactica to negotiate with Admiral Adama. When Colonel Tigh bars Boomer from the meeting, she repeats Number Three's message that Hera is still alive, but ailing, aboard a basestar. Adama confirms this information in a tense conversation with President Roslin. Both Athena and Helo express feelings of outrage that their child was stolen from them. Athena demands at the end of Season 3 episode 11 that she be able to see her daughter.
As there is no way that Adama would let her visit the Base Ship, Athena asks Helo to shoot her so that she can die and be downloaded onto the Cylon resurrection ship. Caprica Six brings Athena to the room on the Base Ship where Boomer is caring for the child. Athena insists that Hera's illness could be cured by the human doctors on Galactica, a possibility that neither Caprica nor Boomer wishes to consider. Athena and Boomer have a heated discussion regarding the fate of the child. Boomer becomes emotionally unstable and suggests that the experiment be abandoned and Hera killed. Before Athena can intervene, Caprica promptly kills Boomer for considering the death of the child. Before their actions can be discovered, Caprica whisks Athena and Hera to a Raptor, and the trio escape to Galactica.
Athena's abilities as a pilot are recognized and she is given the most important missions for Raptor pilots, including the mission through the star cluster to find a food source after the fleet's food supply is contaminated.
Relation with daughter Hera 
Sharon discovers that she, Hera, President Roslin and Caprica Six are all sharing the same recurring vision of an Opera House but are unaware of what it means.
Athena serves aboard the Demetrius to help Kara Thrace try to find Earth.
Athena shoots and kills Natalie because she sees the Number 6 as a threat to Hera due to the dreams of the Opera House that she has been having. She is placed in the brig by Adama for her actions but is later released, likely because President Roslin and Caprica Six confirmed that they were indeed sharing visions.
Athena, along with Helo and Hera, is part of a group of prisoners captured in the mutiny that are placed in the brig. When rescued, she asks Caprica Six to take Hera and a wounded Helo to safety while she helps Lee Adama and Saul Tigh rescue Bill Adama.
Late in season 4, when Boomer is freed by Tyrol after bringing Ellen Tigh back to the Galactica from the captivity of John Cavil and subsequently being imprisoned by Adama, she seeks out Athena, knocks her unconscious, and steals her uniform. Afterward, Boomer has sexual intercourse with Karl Agathon, who believes she is actually his wife. Athena herself, gagged and barely conscious, watches the scene from a lavatory toilet stall that Boomer put her in, unable to act or react.
In the series finale, after watching the preparations for operation committed upon Hera by a "Simon" Boomer kills him. Boomer brings Hera back to her parents Helo and Athena, knowing she was almost certainly going to be killed. After giving them final assistance, she is shot to death by Athena. After arriving at the New Earth, Helo and Athena joyfully joke with each other as how the two will teach Hera all she needs to know, together.
Hera becomes "Mitochondrial Eve", meaning that all modern-day humans are descended from Athena.
Other versions 
- A copy joins a group of Twos, Fives, and Sixes at Ragnar Anchorage after Galactica and the fleet depart having stranded "Aaron Doral." This copy declares that the humans will be hunted down, and a Six replies, "By your command."
- A copy wearing a white coat at the Spaceport at Delphi, whom Athena kills before the other Eight can shoot Helo.
- Multiple naked copies aboard the basestar above Kobol, which Boomer was sent to destroy and upon which she learns her identity as a Cylon.
- A copy who sits in a movie theatre (with other Cylon models) and watches the footage sent from the Fleet by D'Anna Biers (it can be assumed that it is the same one that Athena shot because she wears the same coat as the above mentioned copy).
- Copies who act as "nurses" or "midwives," aiding the respective resurrections of Caprica Six and Boomer.
- Several copies on Cylon-occupied Caprica going through daily life in the episode "Downloaded", wearing a variety of outfits.
- Copies who are killed when Samuel Anders and Galen Tyrol detonate a bomb near a Cylon Heavy Raider.
- A copy who sits next to Boomer during a meeting on Colonial One (during the New Caprican occupation), when the suicide bombings are discussed.
- Multiple copies aboard the basestar that Caprica Six and Baltar inhabit.
- Multiple copies dying aboard a diseased basestar.
- A copy, dying from a disease aboard a basestar, who is taken captive by Galactica. Later, she and the rest of the Cylon prisoners are killed by Helo in an attempt to prevent genocide against the Cylons. This copy, despite calling Sharon a traitor, showed typical Eight concern for her and warned her to stay away due to the disease.
- Multiple copies who approach Athena on the rebel basestar, asking her to lead a rebellion against the Sixes. Athena expresses disgust with their typical Eight fickleness.
- A copy shot and killed by a Centurion while attempting to unplug the Hybrid. She is comforted by Anders in her final moments after Athena refuses to do so.
- The Eight copy who had downloaded Athena's memories and helped Helo bring back D'Anna.
- The Eights in flight uniforms during the briefing for the attack on the Resurrection Hub.
- The multitude of unactivated Eights Helo sees aboard the soon to be destroyed Resurrection Hub.
- Two Eights that were on the Raptor with four humans including Felix Gaeta as seen in The Face of the Enemy webisodes. One had a cynical air and was dressed in a black Cylon flight suit, the other was dressed in civilian garb and had an air of innocence. This latter Eight is the one who pretended to collaborate with Felix Gaeta and had an affair with him on New Caprica. The existence of their interactions on New Caprica was also revealed in The Face of the Enemy webisodes. When the Raptor effectively became lost in space due to a malfunction, the "Innocent" Eight murdered the "cynical" Eight and three humans to in order to conserve the air supply for herself and Gaeta. She then revealed to Gaeta that of the people Gaeta had given her a list of to save, most were really murdered by the Cylons just for being important enough to be listed. She intended to spare Gaeta because she loved him, but Gaeta killed her in revenge for the murders she committed on New Caprica and in the Raptor.
- Multiple Eights are seen helping repair Galactica in "Someone to Watch Over Me". One of them is knocked unconscious by Galen Tyrol and substituted for Boomer in the brig. Another is mortally injured in "Islanded in a Stream of Stars" during a major hull breach aboard Galactica; while in sick bay, she asks for Saul Tigh to visit her, and thanks him for the opportunity to meet her "father" (referencing his status as one of the Final Five Cylons) as she dies. Another was prominent at the bedside of Samuel Anders in "Deadlock", "Someone to Watch Over Me" and "Islanded in a Stream of Stars" making some key suggestions like connecting Anders to the Galactica's power systems and the Cylon data stream to attempt to jump start his brain. It failed but that Eight's action led him to eventually becoming the Galactica's hybrid and was instrumental in rescuing Hera.
Typical Eight traits 
Unlike most other Cylon models, the Eights typically show a great deal of concern and affection towards others. The Eights tend to be the most naive of the models and are often emotionally immature. While capable of convincing manipulation and deception, they are also vulnerable to forming emotional attachments. The Eights also have a propensity for fickleness, often changing loyalties to better suit their own needs and desires, with the notable exception of Sharon "Athena" Agathon, whose loyalty to Commander Adama, Helo, and her daughter are unwavering and uncompromising. Moore has also commented that the Eights are more likely to "shoot things they don't like".
It was revealed by Caprica showrunner Kevin Murphy that the Eights were modeled after Tamara Adama.
Call sign origins 
The call signs for both Sharon characters derive from the names of characters in the original Battlestar Galactica series. Boomer was the name (not the call sign) of a Viper pilot character played by Herbert Jefferson, Jr. Sharon Agathon's call sign, Athena, in the original series was the name of Commander Adama's daughter Lieutenant Athena. Athena was the sister of Captain Apollo, with the duties of bridge officer, shuttle pilot, and occasional Viper pilot.
See also 
- "Resistance". Battlestar Galactica (2004 TV series).
- Maureen Ryan (2009-02-28). "Play it again, Starbuck: Talking to Weddle and Thompson about 'Someone to Watch Over Me'". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on 2010-04-03. Retrieved 2009-02-28.
- Anthony Breznican (2009-03-12). "Internal battles are raging in 'Battlestar'". USA Today. Archived from the original on 2012-10-28. Retrieved 2009-03-13.